ERIS Brewery & Cider House Turns to ELAN of Nortek Security & Control for Total Control of its Cavernous 14,000 Square Foot Venue

When two Chicago-based women purchased a massive former temple built in 1910 with the goal of turning it into Chicago’s first brewery and ciderhouse, they turned to local integration firm, Buchan Consulting, to design and install a control and automation system to manage the technology in the cavernous space. The ELAN® Entertainment and Control system Buchan recommended and installed is now providing seamless control over the climate, audio, video, lighting and security in the ERIS Brewery & Cider House.

“With a venue this large, we had a lot of specific needs and requests that we had to address,” said Doug Buchan, Owner of Buchan Consulting. “The brewery and ciderhouse founders asked us to recommend a robust and easy-to-use automation system that would give them to access all of the building’s technology through a single interface. Without hesitation, we suggested that the brewery rely on ELAN to control the multi-room AV system, surveillance, lighting and HVAC.”

The two-phase project recently completed its first phase, which consisted of a gut renovation of the basement and first floor of the brewery and restaurant. During phase one, Buchan’s team started with an ELAN gSC2 Controller, accessible through the ELAN app installed on dedicated Apple iPads, to control and automate the venue’s lighting, security, audio, video and HVAC. An ELAN 6×6 HDBaseT AV Matrix was also installed, to distribute audio and video throughout the main restaurant and bar floor. For power distribution, Buchan and his team added a Panamax® D10-PFP power strip to the equipment rack, for a convenient way to power a rack full of equipment.

Control of the 14,000 square-foot main floor, brewery, cider/beer fermentation area and office is now easy to manage for the owners and staff. Through the system, they’re now able to customize the climate, including both thermostats and ceiling fans, and adjust the audio and video needs of the separate areas, all with the swipe of a finger. 

The brewery’s owners sought to embrace the industrial charm of the original building. To do this, they kept the original chandeliers, incorporating booths and tables made with reclaimed wood, and using repurposed radiators as railings for the new space. They were successfully able to transform the space so that the technology in no way takes away from the overall design, but helps to enhance it. “Through the ELAN system, we’re able to control and automate a unique and inviting environment that helps to fulfill our goal of making the ERIS Brewery & Cider House a gathering spot for the community. This system allows our staff to easily manipulate the everyday details of the space, all at the touch of a button,” said Michelle Foik, Owner & Managing Partner of ERIS Brewery & Cider House.

Another unique design element is the impressive Haiku fans, which were installed in the main dining space. The smart, WiFi connected fans, are controlled from the ELAN system, as are the Aprilaire® thermostats that run the building’s geothermal heating and cooling systems. 

Given the size of the space, security was another priority for the owners. To accommodate these needs, Buchan and his team installed five exterior cameras at the secondary entrances and two interior cameras at the main entrance, all of which are accessed and controlled through the ELAN system for easy triggering of building lights and push notifications when a security alarm is set off. “The security system that Buchan and his team installed is extremely comprehensive and instantly available to us through the ELAN app,” said Foik. “Having an extensive system gives me peace-of-mind when the brewery is shut down and closed at the end of each day.”

According to Foik, “this system has been so easy to use. Our bartenders and managers can easily change the temperature, the channel on the TV, or crank up the volume at the bar, all through the ELAN app installed on the iPads we have throughout the space. Through this, owners can also remotely access the cameras and be notified of all happenings within the system, thanks to ELAN.”

Phase two of the project will likely start in the summer of 2018 and will include the remodeling of the outdoor dining area, third floor event space and eventually rooftop dining. With the help of Buchan and their team of certified ELAN integrators, the technology involved in the expansion should be easy to deploy and even easier for the staff to use.